Slots machines are the most common casino gaming machines in a casino, and casinos are often evaluated or compared by looking at how many slot machines or slot games they offer. Slot machines have been there since the late 19th century. From the initial hand-driven mechanical machines, they got transformed into electromechanical apparatuses. With modern technology, they again got converted to video slot machines. And now with the advent of the internet, we can even play slots online from the comfort of our home. With every switch to a newer technology, how to play slots also becomes a prevalent question. Here, let us try to address this big question and learn how to play slot machines, especially how to play slots online.

Slot machines – the basics

How to Play Slots Online: The Beginner’s Guide - Slot machines – the basics

Slots machines have three or more rotating wheels called ‘reels’ with their wide rims facing towards you. On the rims are certain symbols. You make your bet and activate the reels. When they come to a stop, if the symbols on the reels form a particular pre-fixed set or sequence, you win. Each of such winning combinations of the symbols is known as a ‘payline.’

Slot machines – How to play the traditional way

How to Play Slots Online: The Beginner’s Guide - Slot machines – How to play the traditional way

The traditional machines, also called ‘reel-spinning machines,’ are the most basic machines with little scope for sophistication. Here is what you ought to know to play them:

  • They are operated using a lever and typically have three reels.
  • The symbols on the reels are usually cherries, bars, figures of seven, etc.
  • Usually, they have only one payline, though in some cases, you can see more.
  • There are different varieties of these machines, and the payout received varies with each kind.

Video slots, and how to play them

How to Play Slots Online: The Beginner’s Guide - Video slots, and how to play them

Now, let’s see how to play in casino slot machine with video screens. Today, traditional machines are a thing of the past, and what we usually see in modern casinos are video slots. These machines are sophisticated with a video screen and mimic the earlier slot machines by displaying reels with their symbols and simulated rotation on the screen. There is a lot of scope for modification and innovation as computer programs run such slots. Here are certain facts to keep in mind when you play them:

  • You can operate slots by using a button instead of a lever. Make the deposit, check the value of coins, decide the number of coins and bets you wish to play, and start playing.
  • Four or five paylines are common, and in some machines, it can go up to tens and even hundreds of them. There is a possibility of forming paylines in various directions, not just in a straight line.
  • In addition to the usual paylines, there are special symbols, combinations, or situations triggering awards, multipliers, and bonus rounds. For instance, a scatter symbol is a bonus symbol that can give you extra payouts.
  • There are also some symbols known as ‘wilds.’ This symbol acts as a substitute for any other designated symbol so that you can win a payline even when you don’t create a full combo with 3-5 identical symbols on it. 
  • Video slots can take advantage of the presence of a video screen in many aspects of the gameplay. Other than the virtual reels, relevant information can always be displayed on the screen. Your bankroll, the bet amount, winning amount and other information is updated live and can be directly read from the screen.
  • You can play theme-based slot games with sound effects and animation of symbols on video slots, unlike traditional machines.
  • Some machines offer an autoplay feature where you can instruct them to play several spins automatically so that you don’t need to activate each spin separately.
  • With these modern machines, you can play using advanced instant payment methods to make live transactions.

How to play slots online

How to Play Slots Online: The Beginner’s Guide

Now let’s see how to play on slot machines online. If you are familiar with how to play the slot machines in the brick-and-mortar casinos, it is very easy to learn how to play slot machines online, because online slots are nothing but the simulation of the offline video slots. The only difference is that you can play them on your PC or laptop with an internet connection at the comfort of your home. Payment may be made using a credit card or an e-wallet.

If you are interested in knowing how to play free slots online, then you may go to the website of the brand that released the game, such as Endorphina, Microgaming, etc. Usually, a free version of the slots will be available there for a trial. Apart from that, free slots are also available on many casino websites. A simple search can take you to a page where you can play almost any slot game of your choice for free. It is a good idea to try games for free until you get familiar with the rules and play for real money.


Here is how to play casino slots; as you can see, it is not difficult. Slots are the most common casino games. The basics of all slots are the same, and when you play more and more, you get the nuances and learn more features. You can play using smaller amounts on basic games. And after that, you can move on to more advanced machines. It is always advisable to try a free version of the game until you become comfortable with the mechanics of the gameplay and are ready to stake real funds.